Howard Berman Concerned About Internet-Repressive Regimes, Except If They Help His Friends In Hollywood

from the mickey-mouse dept

We were just discussing the vast similarities between China's internet censorship and what is being proposed in ACTA -- but, of course, not everyone seems to realize those similarities. Nick Dynice points us to the news that Rep. Howard Berman (who represents Hollywood and is sometimes referred to as "the Representative from Disney" given his longstanding support for any law that increases the scope of copyright law) is apparently speaking out against "repressive internet regimes" such as those in China, while at the very same time being a strong supporter of ACTA which could push for very similar "secondary liability" rules for ISPs in the US that are the foundation of Chinese internet censorship.

Nick also points out how amusing it is that, at the same time, Berman, in his role as chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee has also been knocking China for not doing enough to stop copyright infringement online, complaining about their "weak and ineffectual" measures.

So, apparently, using secondary liability to stop stuff Berman wants stopped is good, but using it to stop stuff Berman doesn't want stopped is bad. But why is it that Howard Berman gets to decide when it's appropriate to force ISPs to block content and when it's not?

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  • identicon
    some old guy, 26 Jan 2010 @ 6:45am

    I agree with your point, but your logic is failing

    But why is it that Howard Berman gets to decide when it's appropriate to force ISPs to block content and when it's not?

    Because, thats exactly what we have lawmakers for.

    Who else should we rely on to decide what is illegal and what is not illegal? A flock of seagulls?

    I agree with your point mike, but your logic here is in need of some focus.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 26 Jan 2010 @ 7:11am

      Re: I agree with your point, but your logic is failing

      Because, thats exactly what we have lawmakers for.

      That's what we're supposed to have *representatives* for. Representatives of the people, not special interests.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        jjmsan (profile), 26 Jan 2010 @ 8:42am

        Re: Re: I agree with your point, but your logic is failing

        Note to old guy lawmakers, plural so a single lawmaker does not get to decide. Also there is this thing called the constitution that has prohibitions against the lawmakers doing being able to make that decision.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      hegemon13, 26 Jan 2010 @ 1:28pm

      Re: I agree with your point, but your logic is failing

      "Who else should we rely on to decide what is illegal and what is not illegal?"

      Certainly not the ISPs, which is who Berman who give the power to.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Ima Fish (profile), 26 Jan 2010 @ 6:49am

    Mike, your analogy fails. You're comparing the protection of free speech to the protection of piracy.

    Everyone knows that a strong copyright does not hinder free speech.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Howard, 26 Jan 2010 @ 7:14am

    Repressive internet regimes are bad...

    except when I'm part of them.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 26 Jan 2010 @ 7:20am

    yea and his holly wood buds IN the USA

    we also see the riaa in canada gettign sued for not even paying artists in canada

    SO WHO IS THE PIRATE
    some kid not making money off downloading
    OR these thieves who commercially have been selling to us

    WHO runs the riaa OH YEA THAT WOMAN

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      chris (profile), 26 Jan 2010 @ 1:14pm

      Re: yea and his holly wood buds IN the USA

      SO WHO IS THE PIRATE
      some kid not making money off downloading
      OR these thieves who commercially have been selling to us


      not making money is the same as making money, just like standing still is the same thing as going backwards.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 26 Jan 2010 @ 8:42am

    It's consistent under certain conditions

    Like, if the goal is (as I suspect) to use "secondary liability" and "graduated response" as a choke-hold on not just file sharing but also on fair use and user-generated content (which no one ever seems to mention in this context, but which would be an obvious consequence of targeting services rather than the specific users who infringe--so obvious that it can't be anything but an explicit goal)--anyway, if that's one of the conditions and at the same time ensuring there is no censorship of the content Hollywood wants to sell to such a large market is the other condition, then this position makes sense.

    In other words, Hollywood wants Hollywood's content to be the only stuff that makes it through without any roadblocks. How is this not obvious, and why won't they just cop to it?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Ronald J Riley (profile), 26 Jan 2010 @ 10:26am

    Berman is a big business stooge.

    I suggest effigy burning demonstrations in his home district. We have inventors from his district who are already considering this and they might be willing to join forces with others.

    It is long past time that the people reign in questionable legislators. This is an issue which transcends party affiliations.

    Ronald J. Riley,


    I am speaking only on my own behalf.
    Affiliations:
    President - www.PIAUSA.org - RJR at PIAUSA.org
    Executive Director - www.InventorEd.org - RJR at InvEd.org
    Senior Fellow - www.PatentPolicy.org
    President - Alliance for American Innovation
    Caretaker of Intellectual Property Creators on behalf of deceased founder Paul Heckel
    Washington, DC
    Direct (810) 597-0194 / (202) 318-1595 - 9 am to 8 pm EST.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    The Anti-Mike (profile), 26 Jan 2010 @ 7:07pm

    I have to say Mike, this is one of those posts where you are stretching so far to try to make a point, that you are hurting your credibility.

    piracy

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Joe Blow, 26 Jan 2010 @ 7:18pm

    The answer is obvious

    "But why is it that Howard Berman gets to decide when it's appropriate to force ISPs to block content and when it's not?"

    Because he is an Israeli and Israelis control the United States of America.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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